If you follow my Twitter, first of all: Sorry about all the Pokémon. But second and far more importantly, you may have noticed that I am not a huge fan of my body. In fact, more often than not, I hate my body. I’m finally in a place where I can start making progress toward not hating myself but it’s much easier said than done. I’ve had to conquer a long-standing fear of physical activity (thanks, childhood gym classes) but I’m getting there. And, without a doubt, my most powerful ally has not been a person, but an app: Down Dog, developed by Yogi Buddha Co.
A Yoga Class in Your Pocket
Of all the different types of exercise I’ve tried over the years, yoga has been the one I keep going back to. The high-intensity stuff is just too stressful for me; I don’t like making noise, I don’t like sweating, and I don’t like feeling like I’m one burpee away from cardiac arrest. HIIT ain’t for me.
But yoga is something anybody can do. I know this because I’m the fattest and most out-of-shape person I know and I can do yoga.
I didn’t think I could do yoga until I got the Down Dog app. But by the end of my first practice, as I lay on my bedroom floor savoring my first of many savasanas, I realized that I’d found something I could actually stick with.
Down Dog generates a custom yoga practice for you based on parameters you set, like length and skill level. The workout plays like a video, seamlessly moving from pose to pose in a way that genuinely feels like a yoga class. It’s not staccato or jerky like other workout generators can be. There’s a conscientiousness behind the app. It flows.
But Wait, There’s More!
Down Dog is the champion of yoga apps as far as I’m concerned. I couldn’t imagine using anything else. But the developers have recently begun expanding into other types of workouts. They now have a HIIT app, a Barre app, and a 7-Minute Workout app. And if the yoga app itself it too intimidating for you, they also have a Yoga for Beginners app to help warm you up for the real thing.
All of these apps are free to use. The original Down Dog app does have a premium subscription for $34.99 a year and they do periodic sales, so be sure to watch out for them. Personally, I find Down Dog Premium 100% worth it for me, but I wouldn’t say the free version is lacking at all. I subscribe because I love Down Dog and want to support the developers. The perks are excellent, though.
I’ve been a fan of Down Dog for four or five years now. I was impressed back then. But seeing how far they’ve come in the years since, I’m proud to recommend this app to people. If you’ve ever wanted to take a crack at yoga but don’t know where to start, start with Down Dog. Your body will thank you.
Rating: 👻👻👻👻👻 Pros: Free version is really all you need, cross-platform, insane quality for value Cons: Not very conscientious of bigger bodies, beginner flows can get repetitive, white people going “Namaste” gets on my nerves a bit